French telecom Iliad coaxing Google, Microsoft into boosting T-Mobile bid?

French telecom Iliad coaxing Google, Microsoft into boosting T-Mobile bid?
French telecom Iliad apparently doesn't believe in the anecdote that gens de France are ones to easily give up. According to the New York Post, which has a pretty good streak of covering the company's rejected $15 billion bid for half of US carrier T-Mobile, Iliad is now trying to raise additional funding from none other than Microsoft and Google. Previously, we reported that Iliad is seeking partners to boost its bid, and cited Dish, Cox, and Charter as potential allies, but Cox went on to deny its involvement.

It is not known how far along the alleged Google/MS talks have went, but a telecom insider reflected that he has been "waiting for Google to make a move" within the wireless industry, as the company "wants everything moved to an Internet protocol standard". According to him, Google wants to lure the TV crowd away from cable companies and beam television content through the Internet. It would make sense for the company to pursue the acquisition of wireless spectrum and use the network for more than cellular services. T-Mobile happens to be an "affordable" carrier (obviously, bidding for control of Verizon, AT&T, or Sprint is much harder at this point) in the process of growing and building out its spectrum.

Then again, the same logic could be applied towards every company that has taken aim at your living room - including Microsoft, Amazon, and Apple.

Additionally, a telecom lawyer explained that technological companies are fuelling competition between carriers to keep the Verizon / AT&T "duopoly" from overtaking the market. "If you get a duopoly, then they [the technological companies]" couldn't access the end user without fees" - said the lawman, adding that "if technological companies think Sprint or T-Mobile might fail, then they might prop them up".

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Of course, the story could be bogus, but it does have a ring of truth to it. Iliad does seem determined to get to T-Mobile, but so did SoftBank's Masayoshi Son before he surrendered, exhausted after fighting for approval with the FCC. Meanwhile at T-Mobile, CEO John Legere took to Twitter to diss Sprint's new $60 unlimited plan:

$60 is $60, but do you think comparing T-Mo's prepaid spin-off MetroPCS to Sprint might be a bit of a stretch?

source: NY Post

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